Rhodes [poem] by George Eklund

On the island of Rhodes I knew so little
Down the sunlit walks above the bay,
On the beach we played chess
With the priests of 1972,
Then took the final cab ride to Lindos,
A perfect place for making love and dying.

When my brother appeared in my dream
I began to know more
Of what we carried to the windmills at night.
Every thought became the beginning
Of a miracle—

Lifting a small block of wood
From the tide of a warm sea,
The gulls swooping in their hungers,
The robust Germans crying Wolfgang, Wolfgang
Frolicking in the surf.

Now I am nearly old in Lindos.
In the left hand a golden glass of warmth,
And in the right, a lengthening rope
That sinks beneath the starry waves
And my brother watching
In the breeze that strikes the windmill blades.


Image of 1930s Switchboard Operator

Image by momo

George Eklund’s work has has appeared in ABZ, The American Poetry Review, Beloit Poetry Journal. Cimarron Review, Crazyhorse, EPOCH, The Iowa Review, Laurel Review, The Massachusetts Review, New Ohio Review, The North American Review, Quarterly West, Sycamore Review, and Willow Springs, among others. His books include the chapbook Wanting to Be an Element, Each Breath I Cannot Hold, and The Island Blade.